Necchi BU Nova | Necchi BU Mira | Necchi BF Nova | Necchi BF Mira | Necchi Service Manual

In a previous post of mine I mentioned the Necchi sewing machine model BF as the grandmother's machine, ideal for those who want to start using the sewing machine at almost zero cost. The abbreviation BF was introduced by Necchi to indicate the straight line sewing machines for domestic use (ita. Bobina Famiglia) with this model towards the end of the 40s as an alternative to the zigzag models called BU (Ita. Bobina Universale, precedentemente BDU, Bobina Domestica Universale, mentre le antenate della BF sono la BD e la BDA, Bobina Domestica con tendifilo Articolato ).
It is one of the most popular models in Italian families, which, together with its robustness, explains its relative frequency even today in the second-hand market. It is no coincidence that the manual reads, on the back cover, "A Necchi machine, if well used, lasts a lifetime or more". The reasons for the success of this machine over time are various and I will try to illustrate them all. 

The Necchi BF (and the subsequent Nova model, distinguishable by some details such as the logo on the top and the type of tensioner) use standard spare parts "class 15" and low attachment presser foot. The transmission of motion to the needle and the hook is entirely mechanical with a shaft, unlike many other machines of the time (and most of the modern ones) in which the transmission takes place with belts. This means that if you decide to shorten your jeans it is able to go through 4/5 layers without skipping stitches and above all without the risk of losing the synchronization between needle and crochet (timing) as can happen to belt models if the belt slips or break. With the right needles and feet, working a couple of layers of natural and synthetic leather is routine, obviously bearing in mind that it is not an industrial machine for leather.

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Necchi service manual and parts catalog, the document refers to the following models of Necchi sewing machines: Necchi BF Nova, Necchi BF Mira, Necchi BU Nova, Necchi BU Mira. The document is very detailed, For those who don't know, Necchi is a sewing machine made in Italy.
This is a rare document, the price is only 9 US$, payment on my PayPal, thanks for your understanding. 92 pages, English, pdf format.

The machine sews back and forth by moving the lever located on the front. It is possible to disengage the feed dogs and use it for freehand embroidery and darning, although this function is more useful in combination with some accessories, such as the eyelet, since a fair amount of practice is required for embroidery. Finally being an entirely mechanical machine, it is likely that you can always do the maintenance , unlike electronic machines where the slightest failure requires the intervention of a specialized technician. Some of this information obviously applies to many other "vintage" mechanical models and in particular to most of the "Made in Italy" Necchi BU, Necchi BF etc. Although the machine is normally included in pedestal cabinets or tables, it is very easy to add an external motor and operate it with a rheostat.

What you can do with a NECCHI depends largely on the accessories: if you are lucky enough to inherit the machine of some relative or acquaintance, it is likely that it will arrive complete with everything you need for the main seams. My BFs arrived without any original accessories apart from a zigzag presser foot, which is a foot that moves the fabric left and right under the needle to allow zigzag sewing on a straight machine, precisely because of the ease with which accessories with universal attachment are found, the problem is only that of the total cost! A head (the machine, usually without motor and without cabinet) of Necchi BF can normally be found on eBay, however, make sure that there is at least the shuttle hook and a bobbin..

Note: the portable green in the suitcase with the motor and the knee control (FHS) is not very common ...let's say that I have not seen others besides mine! Apart from the color, the motor and the base with extension and knee control, from a mechanical point of view it is absolutely the same machine! It is one of the very first portable motor models from Necchi…even if with its over 13-14 kg portability lies only in the fact that the machine is not included in a work table! 
Among other things, the machine originally had a 110 V motor, not so much because it was designed for US export , but because at the time Italy did not yet have a unified 220V electricity grid. You can write your experiences and questions in the comments, Necchi Service Manual and with parts catalog you can get at a price of 10 €, I recommend watching the attached video.

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